Power your Small Business with Social Media
The small business owner must be a master multi-tasker. You are constantly juggling a variety of tasks from attending meetings to tax preparation. A jack of all trades, right? I work with small businesses daily and one of the things that scares them the most about running their business is social media. You can approach social media like an intricate spiders web or you can approach it like taking a leisurely bubble bath. The whole point of social media is to network, connect, and interact with your potential customers. Below are ten easy steps on how to incorporate social media into your small business.
ONE. Have fun. Yes, it is true. Bring yourself, your life, your business to the people. They want to get to know the person behind the business. Show fun behind the scenes clips about the daily operations of your business. No one wants to see an Instagram feed full of your product stock photos....boring.
TWO. Fill out your social media profiles completely. Include your profile picture and business URL at bare minimum.
THREE. Do you have an Instagram account? If the answer is "no", then get one now. If you cannot get Instagram on your phone, get a new phone! Instagram is the most under-rated social media right now. Instagram boasts people of all ages. It is not just for the tweeners anymore. Instagram also gives you the chance to have real time interactions with your current and potential customers. It is a diamond in the rough.
FOUR. Google+. If you have Gmail then you have the ability to add people to your Google+ circles as you are returning or checking e-mails. Simply hover over the persons name in the upper right hand corner and add them to the appropriate circle. You add them and then hopefully they will add you back to complete the circle. Why is this important? You are building networks(or circles as Google+ calls them). Think of it as a real time e-mail list. You can share your business blog posts instantly with your ever-growing Google+ networks. Smart, huh?
FIVE. Link your social media accounts together. Linking your social media accounts together saves you time and energy. Post to three instead of just one social media at once. Instagram (for example) allows you to connect to Facebook and Twitter before you post. My only word of advice is do not connect Twitter to Facebook. Your every tweet streaming to Facebook will make your friends and customers angry. No one needs that.
SIX. USE #Hashtags. Four or Five general tags and one to two creative tags. Where do I use #hashtags? Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google+. Why use #hashtags? People search them. Potential customers search their areas of interest. Potential businesses and bloggers are looking to connect with like minded people. It is like a telephone directory for the modern day. If you are not listed then people cannot find you.
SEVEN. Facebook. You need a presence on Facebook, but it should not be a primary focus. You are lucky if a handful of people ever see your posts. Facebook wants your money for you to be seen. The posts without photos get more visibility. The photos get the most interaction. It is a real crap shoot.
EIGHT. Pinterest. We are visual creatures. Both Instagram and Pinterest are pure visual fun. These two social medias are where everyone is hanging out. Have a presence there. Everything that you pin to Pinterest from your business or business blog is traffic that flows directly back to you. Genius really.
NINE. Make social media part of your day. Are you doing something interesting? Take a picture for Instagram or tell your Facebook followers! The more you practice the less of a hassle it will all seem.
TEN. You can do it. You can do it.
I hope in following these ten steps you can feel confident in your social media direction. Start interacting and start enjoying real results in numbers(money, traffic, and all that good stuff). Start powering your small business with social media today.